The excitement about AI (artificial intelligence) content generators in the last few months has been unavoidable – particularly in recent weeks. So before I wind down for the holidays, I wanted to share a few resources and insights that I think might be helpful for you as a nonprofit communicator.
Articles and podcast episodes about AI content generators
First, several of my favourite publications have covered AI tools, giving me a solid primer. These recommendations are podcast-heavy because audio is my preference for professional development content. Some of these shows offer show notes if you want to stick with written content.
Understanding the landscape of AI content generation tools
If you’re looking for an overview, my two go-to news podcasts have recently provided helpful primers:
- AI art and text is getting smarter, what comes next? from CBC’s Front Burner
- Did artificial intelligence just get too smart? from The Daily (The New York Times)
AI content generator guidance for marketers and PR pros
If you’d like to understand the applications and implications of AI for marketers and PR professionals, check out the following:
- Using ChatGPT to Write About Writer’s Block from the Spin Sucks podcast. Host Gini Dietrich used ChatGPT to write about writer’s block and read out the AI-generated content in this episode, following up with her insights about the limitations and pitfalls of AI for content creation.
- What Does AI Mean for Writers? I Have Thoughts: this is an issue of Ann Handley’s Total Annarchy newsletter. Ann frames AI as a tool that requires knowledge and skills to yield.
- Empowering B2B Marketing Teams With an AI Content Process: May Habib from the Marketing Smarts This episode came out before the ChatGPT buzz kicked into full gear this month and includes ideas for using AI tools to create efficiency — and as a complement to skilled writers.
What nonprofit communicators can expect from AI content generators in 2023
What are the implications of AI for you as a nonprofit communicator? I’m about as new to this topic as anyone else, so I experimented with getting AI to write about this topic for me! After getting several error messages from ChatGPT (likely due to a high volume of users), I used Writer (mentioned in the Marketing Smarts episode above). I’m glad I did because the interface and features are tailored for content marketers!
Here is the “Question or request” I submitted:
Write a few paragraphs about what nonprofit communicators can expect from AI content generators in 2023, including opportunities and challenges for nonprofit marketing communications. Conclude with where or how nonprofits can get started and what they can use AI content generators to write.
And here’s what I placed in their “Context field”:
This text will be used in a blog post for nonprofit communicators about getting started with AI content generators.
Finally, here is the completely unedited content that Writer generated:
“In 2023, nonprofit communicators can expect AI content generators to become more sophisticated and widely used. Opportunities for nonprofit marketing communications will include the ability to create more personalized and targeted content, as well as to automate some of the more tedious aspects of content creation. Challenges will include the need to keep up with the ever-changing technology and to ensure that the content generated is of high quality.
To get started with AI content generators, nonprofits can explore some of the many tools that are available. Many of these tools are free or have free trials, so nonprofits can experiment with them to see what works best for their needs. AI content generators can be used to write a variety of content, including blog posts, social media posts, email newsletters, and website content.”
What do you think? It’s a pretty decent summary and starting point, and I can see how beneficial tools like this might be for tackling the dreaded blank page. And it was fun to play with!
The verdict? It’s worth experimenting with AI content generators.
Having just dipped my toes in the water of what an AI tool like Writer can do, I see some substantial potential benefits and promising features for nonprofit communicators. Beyond just generating content, Writer allows you to set up writing and grammar rules, preferred terminology/lexicon, add “snippets” (such as your mission statement or boilerplate copy) and pull it into a style guide — so it can generate content that fits your organization’s tone, voice, and style. You still need skilled writers and strategists to set up and use these tools effectively, and your communications fundamentals must be in order.
In 2023, I will continue experimenting with these tools for my blog and email newsletter. What about you?
Author’s note: Once I completed this post, I kept the experiment going and used Writer to generate blog post title ideas. I selected the one that I felt was most accurate/reflective of the content (some were way off).